healthy |ˈhelθē|adjective ( healthier , healthiest )in good health: : feeling fit and healthy.• (of a part of the body) not diseased : healthy cells.• indicative of, conducive to, or promoting good health : a healthy appetite | a healthy balanced diet.• (of a person's attitude) sensible and well balanced : a healthy contempt for authority.• figurative in a good condition• desirable; beneficial• A conscious choice; A life-long commitment.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Feeling Free with Food

"You just have to trust that if you’re doing the best you can, and you’re moving your body in some way each day, and eating well, that you will find the weight that’s true to the life you want to live. That weight should include desserts when you want them, drinks when you need them, and laying on the couch all day because your DVR talks sweeter than the pavement." Source
I still think about my weight, what I eat, and the exercise I do, like, A lot. I have talked before about how scared I am to gain back the weight I have lost. I had a brief moment this summer when I felt "free" of my food constraints but when school started back up, the fear of re-gain creeped back in to my life and since then, it has become consuming once more.

I love to exercise. This is the one thing I do feel completely free about. It really isn't torture anymore. I run when I feel like it. I love taking cardio and weight classes. I am slowly *slowly* starting to lift more weights. I miss walking like I did in the summer and I look forward to the warm-ish winter days when I can get out and take my 2 best canine-friends for a stroll, but I acknowledge that is part of where I live. One day, when I have $$$ I will buy a treadmill simply because I love moving my body, but don't necessarily want to sweat it out day after day. I love taking yoga classes, teaching dance, and trying out a killer Jillian Micheal's DVD. I do it because it is fun, and because I feel strong and centered after I am done. It is "me" time. And I deserve that. I have no fears about falling off the exercise band-wagon. It is something I know I will and want to commit to for the rest of my life.

Eating hasn't come so easily. When my sciatica was at its worst in June-July and I stopped running, I cried many-a-time, worrying that I would gain back what I had worked so so so hard to achieve.

But I didn't.

I lost 8 more pounds.

How did that happen?

Well I suppose I started to trust myself a teeny-tiny bit more. I believed that if I continued to eat whole foods and put food in my body that I knew to be good for me, that I would be okay for the time being and that when I could start exercising more heavily again I would lose the weight I had gained. This quasi-free mind-set let me say 'yes' and 'no' to foods without over thinking it too much, let me eat ice cream when I wanted, let me drink a beer or 4 when I felt like being cray-cray, and let me enjoy my summer.

I gained a bit of weight on my birthday. I gained a bit of weight when I went to Banff. I lost what I gained both times. Not by dieting, but by returning to healthy habits.

I miss that feeling.

I can openly say that I am less active now than when I was training for my first half marathon. It's the walking that is gone. It might have only been 50min a day, which doesn't make too much of a difference, but it was 50min of reflection, thinking, and enjoying the sun. It was 50min of freedom and happiness.

When school started and the weather turned chilly-ish, I stayed inside and took up baking. I wasn't as neurotic about baking as I had been in the past. I didn't eat an entire pan. I didn't throw out because I thought it would be too much temptation (not every time at least). But I did sample. I did eat. Yes, I did over-eat.

That's okay though, and like I have said before sometimes you need a bit of a slip up to realize that you miss your more healthy ways. Do I need to bake something every day? Absolutely Not. Was I? Unfortunately Yes.

I am making a conscious decision as I type this to give myself permission to bake when I want to, what I want to, but not for the comfort of being busy and doing something, but for a purpose instead. Christmas Party? Sure. Tutorial Potluck? Alrighty. Cookies Just Because I am Bored? Umm.. Maybe not (all the time!).

So now that the baking bit is sorted out I need to really work on the eating what I want, when I want, but not in excess.

What do I want to eat? Healthy stuff of course!! I obviously feel better, less consumed, and more reflective on life when I am fueling with the good stuff.

I worry about excessive eating. I don't really know if this will go away? This is what got me fat in the first place and the only thing I can do to change that is be mindful and slow when I am eating.

I am going to try at least, to be a bit more easy on myself. I am still going to track food, because I am not really ready to stop that. But I am going to up my calories once more and see how that goes. Does that mean I am going to make sure I eat them all every day? No. I am really going to tune in to my body and listen for my hunger signals. I know that my hunger starts really slow. It is hard to describe the feeling but I suppose all I really notice is that I start to think about food more. I don't feel it in my stomach until it is too late and I am famished. Now that I know this I can listen to my thoughts a bit more closely.

I am still going to step on the scale every Sunday, regardless of how my week has been. Regular weighing is associated with weight loss maintenance. What point is there of turning away from the scale? None. That is avoidance and that will get me fat.

I will enjoy life, food, and everything it has to offer. I will try and find my free.

Right now, if that means gaining a few pounds, gaining a size, and needing to buy new jeans, fine. It takes too much energy to obsess about staying the size I am. I want to re-focus on eating healthy for being healthy, not for being a size 2. A size 4 is perfect as well, and I am silly for thinking otherwise.

To the people who have emailed me recently - I PROMISE I will write back within the week!

Have a happy, healthy, free Holiday. I will be working, so I get to spend my Christmas with all of the new families :) Happy times.